Meditation is a very overlooked and underappreciated form of relaxation – however, it is something that could really save you from stress. That, and pulling your hair out.
Meditation is a very broad term; there are many different forms of meditation, and many different ways, as well as reasons for doing it.
I know what everyone is thinking: college kids don’t have enough time to do anything, who in their right mind would have enough time to do something pointless like meditating? Once the basics are down, however, it’s easy to see that meditating doesn’t take up too much time at all.
I have been meditating for almost five months now, and must say that my life has really taken a different turn after starting it. There are many different ways to meditate, and while it can be overwhelming at first, it is actually a very easy, and quick thing to do. Not to mention, anyone can do it for $0 a day.
There are many different ways to meditate. As stated earlier; it is a very broad term. There are many videos available on YouTube that play relaxing music, as well as mantras – relaxing statements that are repeated over and over – to play in the background while you meditate.
With all those ways, I feel an easy way to get started is following the same steps that I do. This way is not only easy for beginners, but it requires nothing but yourself and an alarm.
To begin, lie down completely flat on your back. It does not matter where you are, it just must be somewhere relaxing (I prefer my bed, but some people feel more comfortable on flat, hard surfaces like floors). Once laying down, make sure your head and neck are comfortable, and then lay your arms down at your sides, with your palms relaxed facing up. Set a timer to anywhere around 15-20 minutes. Close your eyes and take deep breaths, focusing on your breath. Other thoughts will enter your head – don’t be discouraged! Instead of trying to get other thoughts out of your head, whenever you notice yourself thinking of something else, just go back to focusing only on your breath, and in no time you will be back in the zone.
If done correctly, you will soon feel very euphoric and relaxed. Keep deep breathing, again in any way comfortable for you. That can be through the nose out the mouth, only mouth, or only your nose. Keep going for 15-20 minutes.
Set an alarm that is something that will not startle you, or something that comes on slow instead of incessant beeping. For example, I use a tone on my phone that is not too overpowering or in your face. Once you hear it, slowly open your eyes, and continue to lie for around another 30 seconds. Once that time is up, get up and continue on with your day as usual.
All it takes is one or preferably two sessions a day, and the relaxing benefits will be noticed. If keeping up with it, you will be able to go for 20 minutes without needing the alarm.
Meditating can really help you out with a lot of aspects of life. I am a true spokesperson for it. I used to have horrible sleep patterns and could never sleep through the night. Not only that, but I also suffered from some general anxiety and found myself constantly worrying and on edge. Once I started meditating, it all went away and has been a thing of the past.
Only one or two 20-minute sessions a day is all it takes, so what are you waiting for?
Alex Libutti is a second-year student majoring in communications with a minor in journalism. He can be reached at AL803657@wcupa.edu.